Entries tagged with: Portishead
by Doug Moore
Portishead at Hammerstein Ballroom, 2011 (more by Dana [Distortion] Yavin)
Both Portishead and their vocalist Beth Gibbons tend to work slowly; the former theoretically have an album in the works, though it could take "ten fucking years" to be completed. (We're down to seven, now; the band have reportedly cleared their schedules.) Gibbons, likewise, announced plans last year to release a solo album via Domino Records, but details are still in the offing 10 months after the initial announcement.
In the meantime, Gibbons teamed up with the unheralded UK doom band Gonga for an intriguing Record Store Day release: a basically note-for-note cover of Black Sabbath's classic, eponymous song. If you didn't get a copy last weekend (and don't want to spend a bundle on Ebay) you can stream the recording below. Gonga pretty much just play it the way Sabbath did, and even Gibbons' vocal performance is fairly conservative and buttoned up. Still, it's good to hear her voice on a new recording.
Check out the "Black Sabbath" cover (with footage from Mario Bava's titular 1963 horror film) below...
by Bill Pearis
confetti rains at Lada Gaga's Roseland farewell, 4/7/2014 (photo by @talithaanne)
Roseland this morning (photo via @sayitaintsosis)
Roseland opened in New York in 1919 and hosted icons like Count Basie in the Thirties. It relocated to its 52nd Street home (a former skating rink called Gay Blades) in the late Fifties, where a display inside touted the number of couples who'd met there and married. In the Seventies and Eighties, the spot was a disco haven; in the Nineties its 3,500-capacity crowds moshed to Nirvana and Red Hot Chili Peppers. Its next occupants will be a 59-story apartment building, according to the New Yorker.Lada Gaga's seven-show run at Roseland came to a close last night (4/7) and with it the end of one of New York City's most famous clubs which had been in its present location since 1958.
As a Manhattan native, chances are Gaga has many connections to the club, but she didn't regale the crowd with any personal stories about transformative nights on Roseland's famously springy dance floor (she earlier told a reporter about a Franz Ferdinand show there during her senior year of high school where she broke her nose in the pit). Instead, she stuck to her usual self-empowerment lectures ("Do you love you? Then scream!") and spent an outsized amount of time bidding farewell to the female dancer who slithered across the stage with her for Artpop's squelchy bisexual romp "Sexx Dreams." - [Rolling Stone]
Roseland was also home to the annual, over-the-top gay dancefest The Black Party and The Village Voice has a cover story on it, the venue and the changing face (and location) of club culture in NYC:
Pevner scouted other venues, but the Black Party not only needs a dance floor large enough to accommodate thousands of people, but also an entire weekend to install its own soundsystem and light rigs. The Saint at Large, which has held the party at Roseland for a quarter century, had a two-year option extending through 2015. "I told my lawyer to write a letter to address that we employ a staff full-time to work on this," Pevner says, "and if you're going to renege, here's the settlement." Pevner insisted that Ginsberg keep the club open at least through the third weekend in March, the one nearest the vernal equinox, which the party celebrates. According to Pevner, "They didn't want to end with the Black Party." So Ginsberg ended up with a win-win: Gaga gets reams of publicity and the club goes out in a blaze of glory.I saw a lot of shows at Roseland, though mostly in the '90s -- Blur, and Oasis come to mind and I got to go to the Rolling Stones show there in 2002. My last visit there was for Big Audio Dynamite in 2011. I was never crazy about seeing shows there, but I always dug the classic vibe. What shows did you see there?
Still, serious dance enthusiasts will always remember the club more for its unobstructed quarter-acre dance floor than as a midsize concert venue. Everything about Roseland was outsize, right down to its 14 coat-check windows.
More than anything, Roseland's closing marks the most painful sign to date that New York City's big rooms have become an endangered species. That a luxury residential space will likely replace it confirms the main culprit: an insatiable appetite for upscale housing that has transformed Manhattan, from the financial district to Harlem and beyond -- what Fordham professor Mark Caldwell, author of New York Night: The Mystique and Its History, has called "galloping gentrification."
Roseland, you'll be missed.
Portishead famously played their in the late 90s. I say famous because not only was it an exciting show at the time, the show was recorded for a live album and DVD. Watch the whole thing (via someone uploading it to YouTube), below...
Portishead @ Hammerstein Ballroom, 2011 (more by Dana [distortion] Yavin)
While All Tomorrow's Parties held it's final "holiday camp" festival at Camber Sands, UK -- dubbed "End of an Era" -- back at the start of December, ATP will continue to hold events elsewhere. ATP Iceland happens July 10 - 12 in Keflavík at Ásbrú, a onetime naval base. They just announced their first headline acts -- Portishead and Interpol, neither of whom have ever played Iceland. The only other acts announced so far are all Icelandic: Sóley, For a Minor Reflection, Samaris, Low Roar, and Mammút. More to be announced and tickets are on sale now.
by Andrew Sacher
Grimes at ACL 2013 (more by Tim Griffin)
Whether it's to criticize her or praise her, it's hard to deny that people like talking about Grimes' musical opinions. Her top 10 albums of 2012 list included the most pop (Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber) AND the least pop (Swans), and she totally meant it too. She's defended Beyonce, Mariah Carey, and pop music in general, and denied accusations of trolling when her Boiler Room set included Taylor Swift, Maria Carey, Ramones, Skrillex, and others.
Grimes has now published a list to her tumblr of her favorite songs of all time. It continues her trend of pulling from pop and experimental music with songs from Burial, Mariah Carey, Joanna Newsom, Beyonce, Mazzy Star, Skrillex, Animal Collective, Butthole Surfers, Paramore and more. It's not only newer stuff though, she's also got Patsy Cline, Prince, and Enya, among others.
Check out her whole list (subject to change), via Exclaim, below...
The Weeknd at Coachella 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Canadian R&B singer The Weeknd, whose tour includes two Radio City shows in October (tickets), just released the second single from his upcoming LP, Kiss Land. It's an almost-8 minute track titled "Belong To The World" that prominently samples Portishead's "Machine Gun," which he apparently did without permission.
I think it's a load of bollox. When someone asks to sample you and you refuse they should have the respect as a fellow artist to not use it. We usually give sample clearance to tunes we like. its got fuk all to do with money! As most of them are hiphop artist that are skint.Eventually Geoff ended by saying, "Feels like I'm being used to promote the track now... I'll shut up now." You can watch the video for "Belong To The World" below.
In sort of related news, 90s UK trip hop act Morcheeba (no offense Portishead!) have announced a new album, which like Tricky's latest (which features a member of the Antlers), features some special guests: Chali 2na of Jurassic 5, James Petralli of White Denim, Rizzle Kicks, Ana Tijoux and Nature Boy (not to be confused with Natureboy). Head Up High, their eighth studio album, is due for release on October 14. Morcheeba hop the pond for a couple of California shows in September and then tour Europe later in the fall.
Tricky will also tour behind his new album this fall.
While Led Zeppelin's appearances last year were limited to press conferences and late-night TV interviews, Robert Plant will be going on a tour this year with his new band, The Sensational Space Shifters. That tour kicks off this June in Texas, and after making its way over to the West Coast and back, it culminates in a Celebrate Brooklyn! show at Prospect Park on July 27. Tickets for that show go on sale Friday (4/26) at noon with an AmEx and a BRIC presale starting Thursday (4/25) at noon.
In addition to Robert Plant, The Sensational Space Shifters' lineup includes Justin Adams (Tinariwen, SInead O'Connor), John Baggot (Massive Attack, Portishead), Billy Fuller (Beak>, Massive Attack), Liam "Skin" Tyson (of The La's offshoot Cast), Juldeh Camara, and Dave Smith.
All tour dates are listed, along with the tour trailer and a live video of the band from 2012, below...
Nick Cave @ SXSW 2013 (more by Tim Griffin)
One of the Grand Dammes of the music festival world Glastonbury 2013 will happen June 28 - 30 in the UK town of the same name. (They skipped last year.) Announced acts include The Rolling Stones, Phoenix, Arctic Monkeys, Primal Scream, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, Vampire Weekend, Elvis Costello, Kenny Rogers (!), Portishead, Foals, Tame Impala, Alt-J, Billy Bragg, PiL, Smashing Pumpkins, Chic, Cat Power, The Horrors, Rodriguez, Palma Violets, Savages, Crystal Castles and a whole lot more.
No word on tickets yet. You can check out the full line-up on the flyer below.
by Bill Pearis
BEAK> @ ATPNY 2011 (more by Dana [distortion] Yavin)
As mentioned before, Geoff Barrow of Portishead's other group -- motorik postpunk trio BEAK> -- are over from Bristol, UK for a few shows on both coasts, hitting Bowery Ballroom on Sunday (2/10) with openers Chrome Canyon. Tickets for that show are still available. Saturday night (2/9), the three BEAK>s, Geoff Barrow, Billy Fuller, and Matt Williams will be DJing all night (well, 10 PM - 2 AM) in the lobby at ACE Hotel, which is free. Barrow doesn't DJ much anymore which is certainly a good excuse to brave the blizzard that is supposedly gonna hit us.
If you haven't heard Beak's terrific 2012 album, BEAK>>, you can stream it below, along with the video for non-LP single, "Mono." Updated US tour dates are listed below as well.
by Bill Pearis
In addition to their terrific second album which came out last summer, Geoff Barrow's motorik post-punk outfit BEAK> released a non-LP single right at the end of 2012 titled "Mono" and is maybe the most immediate thing the band have done to date. You can stream both sides of the 7" below.
While no full North American tour has been announced, BEAK> will be hitting both coasts next month, playing Bowery Ballroom on February 10. Tickets for that show go on sale Friday (1/11) at noon. The band also play Los Angeles' Echoplex on February 12.
No openers For the Bowery show have been announced yet... maybe they can sneak Anika (whom BEAK> is her backing band on record and who had to cancel her last North American dates) over with them?
"Mono" stream is below...
Speaking of openers on larger tours playing Mercury Lounge shows, Beacon, who are currently on a tour with Tycho, which hits MHOW on February 4 with Oneohtrix Point Never (tickets), just announced a show at the NYC venue happening on March 2 with Xylos and Grimace Federation. Tickets, currently on AmEx presale, go on public sale Friday (1/27) at noon.
Tycho, before hookin up with Beacon (who do their cover of Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night" in their live set), played a show earlier this month in Chicago with Active Child. You can see pics and read about that HERE. Beacon released an EP in 2011.
All Beacon tour dates, a stream of them covering Portishead's "The Rip", and the video they made for their Katy Perry cover, below...
by Andrew Sacher
DOWNLOAD: Doldrums - "I'm Homesick Sittin' Up Here In My Satellite" (MP3)
Doldrums is the moniker of Montreal artist Alrick Woodhead. His Empire Sound EP came out on October 31 via No Pain In Pop with six songs of urgent experimental pop not unlike Grimes, whose upcoming LP features guest work from Doldrums. Download the EP track, "I'm Homesick Sittin' Up Here In My Satellite," above, which sounds about as inexplicable as its title with organic sounding horns and drums thrown into an electro infusion. Watch the new video for EP track "Endless Winter" below. The EP is available as LP/MP3 at the No Pain In Pop webstore.
Doldrums is going on a tour in support of the EP which kicks off this Friday (10/4) in Toronto. He'll hit NYC on November 11 for the Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival and will stick around for another Brooklyn show at Cameo Gallery on November 12 with Prince Rama and Indian Jewelry. Tickets for the Cameo show are on sale now.
Doldrums is also releasing a split 12" with Portishead, the one first announced on Jimmy Fallon, which officially comes out on November 14 via XL Recordings. The 12" has Portishead's "Chase the Tear" on the A-side and Doldrums' cover of the song on the B-side. You can stream Doldrums' cover below.
All dates, tour flier, video and song stream below...
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
To avoid any more Portishead overload after posting about both ATP shows and the first night at Hammerstein Ballroom (and the Chicago show), we never put up the pictures from Portishead's 2nd NYC show at Hammerstein (the 10/5 one). But in honor of Portishead tour opener returning to NYC to play Death By Audio TONIGHT (11/1), here they finally are. They continue below...
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
STEREOGUM: What appealed to you about getting involved with All Tomorrow's Parties?Before Chuck D joined fest co-curators Portishead on stage during their Sunday I'll Be Your Mirror set in Asbury Park, Public Enemy played their own set, as did reunited hip hop group Company Flow (who will play again this month as part of the Creators Project). Ultramagnetic MCs played on Saturday, as did Swans.
GEOFF BARROW: I just like that, for the most part, you wouldn't want to be there if you aren't actually into the music. It's not like Coachella where there are loads of girls walking around in bikinis and stuff like that. It's basically people enjoying what is often some really indulgent music. For us, it's like a Charlie in the Chocolate Factory moment. You win the golden ticket and you get to see how the candy is made. You get to choose the bands that play with you, which is just ... amazing. It's like, wow, yes, please.
STEREOGUM: Who in particular are you most excited about seeing?
GEOFF BARROW: We've been really lucky over the years. We've done three of these ATP festivals and it's always such a good experience. I'm always, always, always very into watching Public Enemy. Also, Ultramagnetic MCs because they are just mental and so important to hip hop. I'll also be watching Swans ... with earplugs. I want to watch everything. I want to watch as much as I possibly can.
Jeff Mangum played his second of three Asbury Park sets on Sunday (10/2), though like his Friday show, we don't have pictures of his set (he doesn't like pictures). We do have pictures of a lot of other sets from Sunday though, and they continue, along with shots of the general Asbury Park scenery (the conclusion of our ATP NJ 2011 coverage), below...
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Swans @ Paramount Theater
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Chuck D on stage with Portishead @ ATP
Portishead completed their NYC & NJ adventure with a 2nd show at Hammerstein Ballroom last night (10/5), and an appearance on Fallon where they performed two songs. On air they played "Chase The Tear" which they first released in 2009 to help raise money for Amnesty International. Jimmy pointed out that you can get a new release of that single exclusively at the XL Records table at the
Brooklyn Flea Brooklyn Flea's Independent Label Market this weekend. They also played 1994 song "Mysterons" at Fallon as a web exclusive. And much to the chagrin of the groaning tourists who were trapped in their seats at the show's taping yesterday, the band actually played "Mysterons" in full twice because apparently something went wrong the first time around. You can watch the version they kept, and what aired on TV, below.
Also in this post is a set of pictures (including the setlist) from Portishead's Sunday set at ATP I'll Be Your Mirror in Asbury Park. As mentioned in the post of pictures from their Saturday show, Chuck D joined the band on stage during "Machine Gun" on Sunday. As not mentioned, Simeon from Silver Apples joined them on "We Carry On" to help close the show. Chuck D video HERE. Simeon video below.
Silver Apples plays Public Assembly in Brooklyn TONIGHT (10/6).
Portishead associate Anika plays Glasslands tonight.
Portishead's Adrian Utley visited Criterion Cinema while in town, and is involved in a show happening in NYC on 10/29.
ATP pictures & Fallon videos below...
The White Light Festival is an annual exploration of music's power to illuminate our interior lives. From the powerful opening chords of Beethoven's Missa solemnis to an exploration of light itself by Jennifer Tipton, to a meditation by Toni Morrison, Peter Sellars, and Rokia Traoré on the darkness of the soul that leads to the transcendence of love, the White Light Festival offers experiences of passionate beauty and occasions of profound insight into the many dimensions of our individual selves and the collective shared forces of the human condition. The Festival closes in a fitting fashion with the bonding power of spiritual ecstasy as Ensemble Sarband, joined by whirling dervishes from the Muslim Mevlevi tradition, draws startling connections between J.S. Bach's Passions and the Sufi mystics...Entering into its second year, the White Light Festival takes place from 10/20 - 11/19 care of Lincoln Center at ten venues around the city (including Lincoln Center). The events take place almost daily and feature everything from art installations to Toni Morrison to the London Symphony Orchestra to scores for silent film. Malian artist Bassekou Kouyate kicks off the festival on 10/20 at David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center with a FREE event.
The White Light Festival hopes to provide moments to pause and explore the spaciousness and breath within.
One of the events is a live score to Carl Theodor Dreyer's 1928 film The Passion of Joan of Arc, which will be given a live score by Adrian Utley (Portishead) and Will Gregory (Goldfrapp) at Alice Tully Hall in the Starr Theater on 10/29. Tickets are on sale.
Check out the fest's site for the full schedule.
Adrian Utley of Portishead, in NYC to play Hammerstein Ballroom, Fallon & ATP, stopped by Criterion this week to discuss some of his favorite films and ended up discussing Joan of Arc and the genesis of his film scoring project with Gregory. Video of that below....
photos by Erez Avissar
"Seriously that was one off the bucket list right there." - Ben Ha-Meen
"portishead stands as the best show ive ever seen " - bryce segall
"Best show I've been to in a very long time." - Chris Denman
"Oh man, Portishead was freaking ridiculous tonight. Holy shit. That is some baby making, ecstacy popping shit right there." - Notorious K.I.M.
"Portishead was a religious experience #portishead" - Chelse D
"Portishead killed me. I cried like an idiot. An unforgettable performance..." - Marine
"On our last tour it collapsed because of personal things, not between the band, but relationships, divorces," Geoff Barrow told BBC 6 Music news.After two shows at ATP in Asbury Park, Portishead finally made their official return to NYC at Hammerstein Ballroom last night (10/4). Here are some pictures from the amazing show which was their first of two in Manhattan.
"We hadn't stopped since [debut album] Dummy," he said, "but it's fine now."
However, producer and instrumentalist Barrow admitted the band's complex, claustrophobic sound often proved a headache to recreate live.
"We have to take out lots of old gear and it's like a jigsaw puzzle, trying to get the right sound," he said.
"It's not like we are pushing 'go' on a computer and singing along to it. It's something a bit more interesting than just straight up rock bands or dance acts."
Portishead achieved overnight success with Dummy, which won the Mercury Music Prize in 1995 with its eerie electronic soundscapes, haunted by Beth Gibbons tremulous vocals.
They followed it up with a grainier, self-titled album in 1997, featuring the top 10 hit All Mine - later covered by Tom Jones.
But the band appeared to split up in the wake of their 1998 US tour, releasing several side projects and producing music for other bands.
However, after making a return to the Portishead name in 2008, they recently confirmed they would start work on a fourth album in January 2012.[BBC]
The setlists so far have varied by like one song each night. Their 90-minute, 15-song Hammerstein performance began at 9:30pm after a set by their tour-mate Thought Forms. They do it again tonight which is also when they appear on Fallon. Here are some pictures from the first night.
More pictures and the setlist from last night below...
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
After leaving us hanging for over 14 years, Portishead finally returned to the east coast of the United States to play one of my personal favorite shows of all time at Asbury Park's Convention Hall as part of ATP's "I'll Be Your Mirror" on Saturday night (10/1). Unfortunately I couldn't stick around to see them do it again on Sunday (with special guest Chuck D of Public Enemy who played before them that day), but I do plan on being at one or both of the Hammerstein Ballroom shows this week to relive it again. I'll definitely watch Fallon too.
Much like Radiohead recently, Portishead's live lineup included two bald men. Like Radiohead, one of those bald men was Clive Deamer on drums (at least I think it was). The guy is keeping busy.
Jeff Mangum, who played the night before, and the two days after (including tonight) was in the audience to check out the NJ fests's co-headliner. From my seat I could see him talking to the drummer of Shellac (who also played the night before and who also plays tonight). Beth Gibbons crowdsurfed on top of that audience at the end of the amazing set.
More ATP coverage coming. For now, here are the Portishead pics from Saturday (with setlist), and a video of Chuck D joining them on "Machine Gun" on Sunday (like he did in 2008 at Primavera). It all continues below...
I know you're sick of Radiohead posts, but, well, they keep doing things! (and anyway, more importantly, this post also contains Portishead!). But back to the point.... Radiohead just played two shows at Roseland Ballroom, appeared on SNL, and on The Colbert Report. They're also rumored to play for Occupy Wall Street today at 4 PM, though that might not happen. In addition to all of that, Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood will perform on Fallon on Monday (10/3). According to Radiohead At Ease, they'll be performing "Give Up The Ghost."
Speaking of Fallon, his week-long run of Pink Floyd covers (that started with the Shins) continued on Tuesday when Foo Fighters played "In The Flesh" with Roger Waters, on Wednesday when MGMT took on "Lucifer Sam" off of The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, with help from Bradford Cox who was dressed as Joey Ramone. Dierks Bentley did "Wish You Were Here" last night (9/29). You can watch all three videos below.
MGMT will also perform at The Guggenheim on November 10 and 11 as part of the 2011 Guggenheim International Gala. The 11/10 show is a private party, but the 11/11 show is a public event. Tickets go on sale Friday (10/14) with a member presale starting Thursday (10/13).
Portishead, who plays and curated ATP NJ this weekend, will appear on Fallon on Wednesday (10/5), two days after Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood do. Portishead play their second of two sold out shows at Hammerstein Ballroom the same night.
Fallon videos below...
DD/MM/YYYY - 2.45pm-3.45pmThe missing band is Mogwai.
Deerhoof - 4.15pm-5.15pm
Company Flow - 5.45pm-6.45pm
Public Enemy - 7.15pm-9.15pm
Portishead - 10.00pm-11.30pm
DD/MM/YYYY also plays in NYC tonight.
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: Anika - Yang Yang (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Anika - Terry (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Soft Moon - "Total Decay" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Soft Moon - Breath the Fire (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Mikal Cronin - Get Along (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Mikal Cronin - Apathy (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Howler - I Told You Once (MP3)
Hello and welcome to the ATP Runoff edition of This Week in Indie. (Aka ATPTWII.) Yes the big news is the Portishead-curated All Tomorrow's Parties which is happening this year in Asbury Park, NJ which looks to be super cool. (I would like to see The Pop Group.) There are still tickets available for most of it -- it gets a little confusing what with "Three Day Jeff Magnum" passes and other variations but this column will not get into that. We're talking bands/artists who are also playing NYC shows while here. And some other stuff too.
First and foremost, for me, is Anika who is making her North American live debut tonight (9/27) at Le Poisson Rouge and tickets still seem to be available. Her debut album snuck in late last year but made my Best of 2011 with it's mix of post-punk and dub, and I've been waiting to see her live ever since. As I wrote before:
Recorded in 12 days, live with no overdubs, it sounds like the missing link between The Slits and Lilliput. Portishead's Geoff Barrow -- his other band BEAK> is the backing band here -- gets the claustrophobic vibe just right. A lot of people have tried and failed to recreate that Martin Hannett Sound... Barrow nails it. And the material -- a mix of girl group covers and politically-charged originals -- suits Anika's Nico-esque delivery perfectly.You can download two tracks at the top of this post, cover's of Yoko Ono's "Yang Yang" and obscure British girl group singer Twinkle's "Terry." Anika is here on a limited North American tour and all her dates are at the bottom of this post. Anika's live band is a 5-piece that includes two of the three members of BEAK> (Geoff Barrow is the one who doesn't play with her live).
Opening for Anika is local act Slowdance who you may remember made L Magazine's "8 Bands You Need to Hear" list and whose debut EP, Light & Color, was just released last week. It's a "name your price" download at their Bandcamp site. The whole thing is pretty good but I especially dig the opening track "Cake" which is kind of like early B-52's minus Fred Schneider but in French.
I mentioned BEAK> who, in addition to sharing members with Anika, will also be performing their own set at ATP and have also just released a split EP with Toronto's proggy, mathy DD/MM/YYYY who are playing Friday night at Cameo with like-minded noisemakers Yvette and Bambara. DD/MM/YY are on short East Coast tour while here for ATP and all dates are at the bottom of this post.
If you like DD/MM/YY or have been curious about seeing them live, you should go to this show... because they're breaking up at the end of October and the Cameo show is their last NYC show before doing so. I last saw them at M for Montreal two years ago, where I wrote:
Also impressive live are Toronto's DD/MM/YYYY who have clearly gotten much tighter than the last time I saw them (Don Pedro's, like three years ago). It's proggy-mathy, but bordering on chaos too. I'm not that crazy about their records -- a little too much going on at one time for my poppier tastes -- but I'd go see them again, no question.Don't get too sad about them calling it quits, as four of the five are regrouping under the name Absolutely Free and will make their live debut at M for Montreal this year.
More ATPTWII action: London trio Factory Floor play two NYC shows this week: tomorrow (9/28) at Knitting Factory with Apache Beat and FAN-TAN, and then Thursday (9/29) at Mercury Lounge with fellow Londoners Walls.
Factory Floor get a lot of Joy Division comparisons and JD/New Order drummer Stephen Morris is a fan, remixing last year's "Wooden Box" single. But apart from looking sad in their press shots, Factory Floor are more in the minimal wave camp with drone and repetition being their weapons of choice. Their new single "(R E A L L O V E)" is basically a goth/industrial/techno/Krautrock ode to Donna Summer/Giorgio Moroder's "I Feel Love" and is pretty awesome.
The band's next release will be on DFA in November. Judging from live clips on YouTube (like them performing "(R E A L L O V E)" at Rough Trade which you can watch below), Factory Floor are intense live and you might want to rearrange your show schedule to see them.
The Soft Moon
And rounding out the ATP-related shows are San Francisco's The Soft Moon who were supposed to be opening for Mogwai (who had to cancel) but will now play 285 Kent on Saturday (10/1) with White Ring and Beige (video flyer below), and the Wierd Party next Wednesday (10/5). Their new EP, Total Decay, is out on Halloween via Captured Tracks and you can download a track from it (and one from their debut album) at the top of this post. If you like '80s 4AD goth (Clan of Xymox, Xmal Deutchland) you're probably already going.
Speaking of goth, in a totally different way we've got Veronica Falls in town for two shows: tonight (9/27) at Glasslands and tomorrow (9/28) at Pianos. Their debut, out last week on Slumberland, is one of my favorite albums of the year so far. I wrote about it over at Sound Bites which I will quote here:
The band get the C-86 tag a lot but, apart from The Velvet Underground (which has inspired 95% of all indiepop), New Zealand seems to be a bigger influence anyway. "Misery" and current single "Bad Feeling" could both be Bats songs. (The Verlaines are a clear influence too, and I bet someone in the band loves The Chills' "Pink Frost.") But this is not a band you really sit around playing "spot the influence" to, as you're too busy swooning to the gorgeous melodies and Roxanne Clifford's truly lovely voice.When I said "goth" above, I mean more in an old school romance kind of way. Love and death, often intertwined. If you're on Spotify you can listen to the album here. They're great live, do go see them. Tonight's Glasslands show is with German Measles, Tanks Amigo and Darlings; the Pianos show is entirely TWII-endorsed, with McDonalds, Heaven's Gate and The Hairs.
There's not a dud in Veronica Falls' 36 minute running time. New songs ("Misery," "Bad Feeling," the effervescent "The Box") are equals to early singles "Found Love in a Graveyard" and "Beachy Head" which appear here in newly recorded versions that might actually improve on the original versions.
Ty Segall plays Bowery Ballroom on Thursday (9/29) and we've given him a lot of love over the last few years. He's awesome. If you're going, do get there early and see opener Mikal Cronin who plays in Ty's band and used to front Charlie & the Moonhearts. I liked the Moonhearts just fine, but playing with Ty seems to have done wonders. Mikal's self-titled LP on Trouble in Mind (produced by Ty) is far and away the best thing he's ever done, is one of my albums of the year, and I like it more than Segall's Goodbye Bread to be honest.
The album has great song after great song, killer hooks and harmonies -- SoCal garagey surf-pop at it's finest. You can download two tracks from the album at the top of this post.
Friday is the last night of Monster Island Basement and the DIY venue is going out a big show featuring Regal Degal, Total Slacker, La Big Vic, Hume and Royal Baths. It's the record release party for Total Slacker's debut album, Thrashin', which got a 6.7 on Pitchfork today:
Total Slacker's sense of humor is the album's driving force, and it's both overt and weirdly specific. The lyrics, for the most part, are a goofy celebration of the slacker caricature. Between the references to weed and various snack foods, and the record's languid pace, Rountree perpetuates the archetypal slacker character with his nasal whine. The track "Thyme Traveling High School Dropout", for example, is a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles-style branding for a guy who goes back to the 18th century because marijuana isn't illegal then. And the title "Stealing From Salvation Army" says it all-- he plans on doing just that after he wakes up in the afternoon. That's pretty much the whole album. Thrashin' largely depends on buying into that character and thinking it's funny, or at least interesting, for 40 minutes.With Total Slacker's propensity for instrument-destroying, this last night at Monster Island could be a doozy.
And finally, Minneapolis band Howler are playing their first NYC shows this week: Thursday (9/29) at Glasslands and Friday opening for Tapes n' Tapes at Bowery Ballroom. The band just signed with Rough Trade who put out their EP, This One's Different, not too long ago. They're getting more UK press than here in the States. NME gave the EP 8/10 saying:
Howler are musical pizza. They're not a band you define yourself by. They're a band you dance to. Which is not to say that Howler are stupid, or people who like Howler are stupid. They just don't feel the need to prove that they're clever.Everybody likes Pizza, right? The review goes on to make a Razorlight comparison, so this pie must have extra cheese. You can download a Howler track at the top of this post.
The title of this first EP by Rough Trade's most recent signings is both misleading and spot on. There's nothing much different about these Minneapolis boys at all, with their sexy bedhead hair, skinny limbs and small-child-romping-at-a-family-wedding goofy energy. Their bratty guitar pop is as familiar as skin, but also as warm and lovable. But then, how many flat, formulaic takes on this same sound are also-running around out there? Howler are different because they make commonplace components fly with a brilliant nonchalance.
And that's the big stuff for this week. Slightly smaller stuff is below, day-by day:
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27
Portland duo Viva Voce are at Mercury Lounge tonight. They don't get enough attention -- apart from just being two of them there's no "angle" per se, besides good songs and great musicianship -- and their new album The Future Will Destroy You is pretty good.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 28
Somebody is playing Roseland tonight, can't remember who.
Edan @ ATP NY 2008 (more by Zach Dilgard)
Today we can confirm that the fantastic Edan will join the Friday line-up of I'll Be Your Mirror USA, bringing one of his renowned DJ sets to the Berkeley Hotel.Set times below...
We can also confirm the film schedule as presented by the Criterion Collection - which includes appearances from Robert Downey Sr presenting Putney Swope and Stan Warnow presenting Deconstructing Dad about his father Raymond Scott as part of the Lapham's Quarterly Literature Stage. Click here to check out the full film schedule.
Today we have also updated our Accommodation list - new accommodation options are being added all the time, but everything on the page now has been checked in the last 24 hours and has availability.
We will be emailing all ticketholders in the next few days with a full letter giving information on check-in and other important details - keep an eye on your inbox for that (we will post it here too.)
Check-in where you will exchange your festival tickets for wristbands will take place in the Berkeley Hotel from 12 noon each day. Note if you have a Jeff Mangum Weekend Pass, when you check-in we will be giving each of you a physical ticket detailing your seat for the performance you are attending - this is to avoid people queuing throughout the day (which would cause a hazard and make you miss everything else going on!).
And finally here are the Stage Times for the event. Note that Thought Forms now perform on Sunday instead of Saturday...
OMD @ Terminal 5 in March (more by Dana (Distortion) Yavin)
As Tune-Yards starts her second of two NYC shows at LPR tonight (9/20), OMD will be beginning their first of two shows at Irving Plaza. And I don't know what is about right now and two-night stands, but Wedneday and Thursday have two Beirut shows (both shows with Stereolab's Laetitia Sadier) and two Opeth shows.Thursday and Friday bring two Wilco shows (tickets went back on sale today) and two Girls shows (who also play Other Music while they're here). Old school East Coast punks (sort of) Blondie (who cover Beirut on their new album) just played two shows at Highline Ballroom. Old school West Coast punks X begin a two night run at Irving Plaza soon, but not before the two Radiohead shows at Roseland Ballroom with Four Tet and friends go on sale, sell out and happen (though Radiohead does overlap with X's Maxwell's show). Megafaun also play two NYC shows next week, as do Mogwai with the Soft Moon. Jay-Z & Kanye West will spend
9/27 & 9/28 11/5 & 11/6 at the Izod Center in NJ. Portishead and Jeff Mangum help end September and begin October with two shows each as part of ATP in NJ. Portishead follow it up with two more shows at Hammerstein Ballroom. I think that's a good place to stop. What else?
Portishead @ Coachella 2008 (more by Ryan Muir)
The number of bands playing NYC before or after ATP NJ in Asbury Park is multiplying. We've recently mentioned that Shellac play The Bell House and that Anika, whose album was produced by Geoff Barrow of Portishead, plays LPR (it will be her first US live show).
It's now been announced that Portishead, who co-curated and headline the NJ festival, as promised, will follow ATP with a North American tour that kicks off on October 4 and 5 at Hammerstein Ballroom!!! Tickets for all dates are on presale now! Tickets "go on sale to the general public July 15th and 16th, with the exception of Chicago, on sale date July 22nd."
According to Adrian Utley, "We've always thought that we must come back to tour in the states, something we wanted to do with the release of Third, but our schedule just wouldn't allow it. Being that we were asked to curate I'll be your Mirror, this just seemed like a good start to touring the states - it set's it off in absolutely the right way. We are absolutely delighted to come back."Portishead last visited North America to play Coachella in 2008, but never came east. Geoff Barrow's band BEAK> did play here in 2010 though, also around an ATP appearance.
Though it's hard to want a show to be at Roseland or Hammerstein, it's too bad they didn't choose Roseland for old time's sake. All new dates will be opened by Thought Forms (who opened for Portishead in Utrecht on 6/15).
All tour dates are listed below...